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Grow Trust is an emerging organisation being founded by:
Linwood Community Development Trust, Beith Community Development Trust and Lochboisdale Amenity Trust based on the Montragon Model of Growth and Development within the context of Scotland and the UK.
This is helping us all to develop a shared vision, aspiration, technical models, benchmark and common language. In addition to the development of the Grow Trust, each Trust has a requirement to develop their own organisation.
The resources of time, experience, learning, knowledge, experimentation mentoring and a host of other resources need to be devoted to the development of this. This needs to be facilitated and supported and should be a priority over the next five years.

Due to the nature of the development trusts themselves the need for this development approach has to be set within the community context. That is, the development Trust develops not just as an end in itself, as part of the wider development in the community it serves.

The Grow Trust can contribute to this process, in addition other partners will need to be involved. An assessment of need will have to be carried out followed by an assessment of available services. What is not available to fulfil a need of the Trusts will have to be created. There will be a need to broaden the experiential base for learning across many countries.

The Emerging model for Grow Trust:

1. Generate its own income through two enterprise activities, energy generation and aquaponics which will be developed over the next five years.

2. Generate income through a fee based approach to community enterprise development.

3. Achieve sustainability through the development of a pipeline of community enterprise projects.

4. The initial investment for the Grow Trust over the next 5 years will be through grants and soft loans.

5. Collaborative working will form the core strategy of the Grow Trust development. This will negate a major weakness for the Grow Trust development, the lack of a track record in enterprise development and delivery.

6. Forming strategic partnerships will assist in the long term growth and development of the Grow Trust and the building of funders and investors confidence in the Grow Trust.

7. Strengthening the operational and development of Linwood, Beith, Lochboisdale and Govan Trusts over the next five years.

Partners and Potential Investors

The focus on the development of policy, collaborations and partnerships as a means to innovate and create new markets will produce both the economic and developmental outcome which the members of Grow are working towards.

In 2012 19% of sales were in products and services that did not exist 5 years ago (Mondragon ).

The collaborations and partnership development over the next five years will be crucial for the Trusts and The Grow Trust to create sustainable enterprises and employment.

To date, Grow Trust has a partnership with Oxfam and proposed strategic partnerships with Social Investment Scotland and Brodies.

A meeting took place with the Big Lottery yesterday (7th August 2013). This was an introductory meeting setting out what the Grow Trust is, history, plans, overview of the work of the Trusts, future plans and funding required. The three Trusts, Beith, Linwood and LAT were all represented.

What does this mean for Linwood?

What Linwood CDT has done is ‘LISTEN’ to the voices of our community as outlined in our Community Action Plan and we are now on the brink of taking forward much needed facilities and services for our community as decided by the community themselves.

These include:

Healthy Eating in Linwood Project (HELP ) – an employability, volunteering and healthy eating project.

Linwood in Bloom – to make our town attractive and somewhere to be proud of.

Light up Linwood – to bring a bit of christmas cheer!

Youth Stand Up Group – to ensure the voices of our young people are heard for the future of our town.

Community Wellbeing Centre – on the brink of taking over a 2.4 hectare piece of land from Renfrewshire Council where we want to build a centre that will support the human, social and health issues we are currently facing.

However, we know we will need a lot of support and advice to enable us to reach our aspirations and this is why we need GROW TRUST.
Grow Trust will bring the much needed expertise we require instead of feeling as though we are constantly ‘rolling jelly up a hill’. We believe that this unique structure and way of working will enable deprived communities, like Linwood, to grow and prosper and bring about the true meaningful regeneration our community deserves.

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